Diuretics are drugs that increase the volume of urine produced by promoting the excretion of salt and water from the kidneys. There are several types of diuretics, each working in a distinct way.
Loop diuretics prevent re-absorption of sodium and chloride ions in the Loop of Henle. Thiazide diuretics inhibit sodium re-absorption at the beginning of the distal convoluted tubules. Potassium sparing diuretics prevent excessive loss of potassium at the distal convoluted tubules.
Diuretics are used to reduce the edema caused due to salt and water retention in disorders of the heart, kidneys, liver or lungs. They are used commonly in treatment of hypertension.